Saturday, December 14, 2013

More Big Organized Rides . . .

Quadzilla map.  Starts and ends in cheery Ithaca.
As a reminder: this is intended to be a list of ideas, not a ride calendar for next year!

Quadzilla:  this event is difficult to find information about.  Whomever does the organizing does a poor job of maintaining a website.  It does appear to have moved a couple of weeks earlier from past years' mid-August date; in 2013 Quadzilla was run as four consecutive 200Ks circumnavigating all of the Finger Lakes.  As Damon can attest, up and down over the ridges between those lakes isn't Appalachian quality climbing, but it's pretty serious late in the day, and Quadzilla historically boasts in the range of 10,000 feet of climbing per century.  Certainly the elevation profile is nothing to sneeze at.  I've had my eye vaguely on this event for some years now.  That's partly because I love riding in central New York; that's partly because this is one of those spoken-of-in-hushed voices rides; and that's partly because it's about the right balance of branded versus run-out-of-some-guy's-conversion-van for my sensibilities.
Quadzilla elevation.  At least it's flat on net.

If the weather was right, this would win the
most-scenic brevet award.
Denali Dirt-Road Randonnee:  if the 600K isn't the right time, distance, or otherwise to entice one to Alaska, the 300K out and back on the Park Road might well be.  This was run in mid-July in 2010.  Here's an old ride report.  Hard to find much information about it more recently than that.  I'd reach out to Kevin, but I'm afraid he's sick of responding to my e-mails.  A better policy may be just to show up and to finish.

I don't know that Hoodoo covers that road,
but it would be cool if it did.
Hoodoo 500:  we've certainly talked enough about this bad boy to start to consider it more seriously.  There's a two-man team option which may just be possible with no additional support.  (Presumably the non-riding support car driver can catch an hour's nap from time to time.)  There's also the invitation only "Voyageur" option, which is Randonneur style.  I'm intrigued at the degree of caution associated with allowing entry into that category.  A rack is required?  This would be an intriguing capstone to a summer's riding.

Yes, there is some pretty country in eastern Ohio.  Not
exactly Denali, or Zion, or even the Finger Lakes,
but pretty nonetheless.
RAAM Challenge:  yes, back to this series.  There are four 200/400s run between mid-August and early November, which is conveniently about the time that Randonneur events are sparse and I'm frequently burned out on serious racing.  One of those is the conveniently located (for me) Columbus, Ohio, which got a good turn-out last year and had one guy just barely missing the coveted 24-hour 400.  Another of those is mid-September in Sacramento.  All of the RAAM Challenge routes I have seen have done a good job pegging the climbing at near 20,000 feet, not diabolical but not in the least trivial over that distance.  Columbus is no exception.  The course (map at same link) hits some beautiful country through eastern Ohio, about where the Great Plains give way to the Appalachian foothills.

RC Sacramento is run just two weeks prior.  Smaller turnout there, but Seana Hogan, not long after her RAAM DNF, knocked that out the park with just-over-25-hour 400 mile, just 40 minutes off the overall (male) winner.  The route?  Another well-constructed ~20,000 feet-of-climbing and assuredly beautiful scenery as you ride north, out to the coast, and back toward Sacramento through California wine country.  Sam has done some riding around Sacramento and I once spent a week, including pedaling at least 112 miles, in the area around Healdsburg, Windsor and Santa Rosa.  My guess is that's an inspired route after the summer heat has passed. 

I can see that ruminations on fall riding will have to wait for a third post.  What's left?  Texas Time Trials?  The ROMA fall SR series?  Even the Taste of Carolina 1200K?


Unknown said...

Taste of Carolina isn't worth considering. I've talked to a couple of people on rando rides who've done it, and they consistently rate it as their least favorite among the rides of that distance that they've attempted. Kinda boring and not too pretty, I gather. Probably better to aim for something more interesting when there's so much to choose from.

Max, no interest in taking your cross build bike up to D2R2?

Max said...

D2R2: Not that I'm disinterested, but I should say a single speed bike built on a early-70s frameset (i.e., not light) is probably not the ideal steed for the ride. I do think a good wide-tired road bike might work just fine. August 23 is just possible -- will be back from Colorado and presumably mostly recovered from the CM ride Sam plans to take me on. Are you willing to commit?